Thursday, June 21, 2012

Up The Creek Again

Belated post from the weekend. Thank you Blogger for the new updated version that now means I can't blog from the office because the prehistoric version of Windows isn't supported anymore.

So, anyway I took a couple of hours at Hoffler creek as a part of Father's day. I picked the first day that the mosquitoes really came out in force. The year so far hadnt been to bad but Sunday, the moment I got out of the car the evil little buggers were whining in my ears. Even the steady breeze didnt keep them off. 

But there was plenty to see to make up for the irritation. I kept out of the woods because they wre going to be loaded with ticks, one set of blood-suckers was enough without going looking for more.

It was a little thin butterfly-wise but there were a few very nice Horace's Duskywings looking dark and sharp and freshly emerged.

One or two tiny Azures too feeding on the clover. Usually the best butterflies at Hoffler in summer are found in the sunny breaks in the trees around the lake. But the flowers they prefer, the blackberries, had already been and gone. Early this year there were no flowers but that meant blackberries to nibble on for yours truly.

The dragonflies also seemed to be a little scarce on Sunday. I saw more species on my own pond last week than I saw at Hoffler on Sunday.

Male Four Spotted Pennant

and the female.

Male Needham's Skimmer and damselfly meal.

Halloween Pennant

Mating pair of damsels still waiting for an ID

But no Saddlebags either Black or Carolina and no Darners that I could see either.

I did find some fun beetles though.

This is the Groundselbush Beetle Trirhabda bacharidis. I'd never seen one before but there were hundreds of them on the Groundselbushes and they are not members of the Skeletonising Leaf Beetle sub family for nothing.

And a rather different Ladybird (OK Ladybug) the Multicoloured Asian Harmonia axyridis pleasingly bright and shiny .

But the pictures I liked best werent bugs at all, but were still invertebrates. The creek and the slat marshes are always full of crabs but mostly they are down in the mud and grass and difficult to see. But Sunday I stumbled over a couple out in plain sight just asking for pictures
This little beast is going to grow up to be a Chesapeake Blue Crab. A delicacy so I'm told though they always taste a little muddy to me.

But this ones bigger and closer.
A Fiddler Crab that wandered across my path as I walked down to the salt marsh and this picture really does show the contrast between the two claws. What a handsome little beast he is.

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